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Emperor Leo I

Leo I the Great was the first Eastern Roman emperor to be crowned by the Patriarch Anatolius of Constantinople. 1)

Irene of Athens

Irene of Athens was Byzantine empress (797-802), wife of Leo IV. Since 780 Irene was regent to her minor son Constantine VI. In 787, during the Second Council of Nicea, she restored the cult of images. When the son came of age and assumed the throne, there was a permanent conflict of power between the son and the mother. Eventually, the empress led to his blinding and imprisonment, where he died. Because of her role in the fight against iconoclasm, she is sometimes venerated as a saint in both Eastern and Western Christianity, although she has never been officially canonized. 2)

The Book of Suda

The Book of Suda, often quoted under the Latin title Liber Suda, is a 10th-century Byzantine lexicon of about 30,000 entries, of which about 900 are factual articles, mostly historical and literary. In view of the scarcity of ancient sources, the book is invaluable and in many cases the only source of historical information. Justus Lipsius, a Flemish historian, and philosopher called it “a ram of the golden fleece”. 3)

Constantine V Copronymus

Constantine V Copronymus (718 - 775), was a Byzantine emperor, one of the greatest iconoclasts. He was nicknamed copronymus (kopros, dung) by historians hostile to the iconoclasts. At the Council of Hierei, he banned the preservation and production of any artwork related to Christian worship. This was the prelude to a widespread campaign to destroy works depicting the figures of saints, the Holy Trinity, and so on. From churches walls with mosaics were torn out, illustrated books were burned, dozens of monasteries were turned into arms depots and barracks, thousands of monks were forcibly married off to former harlots. 4)


Hesychasm (hesychasmos; from Greek 'ησυχία, hēsychía - tranquility ) is a Byzantine mystical current that reached its peak development and popularity in the 14th century. The basic idea of Hesychasm is the spiritual union of man with God as a form of his deification. Hesychastics preached the possibility of seeing the light of God through intense prayer, contemplation, and specific ascetic practices, which consisted of holding one's breath during prayerful silence. The doctrine was most fully developed by Gregory Palamas, a monk from Mount Athos, whose name Hesychasm was often called Palamism. 5)

byzantium.txt · Last modified: 2021/08/04 05:44 by aga